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Tuesday, July 16, 2019

You Did It!: Wyoming High School Graduation

By Victory Lee, Wyoming High School

On June 1, Wyoming community joined in the ceremony to celebrate the graduation of the 160 seniors of Wyoming High School (WHS). Families, relatives, friends, and teachers all gathered outside the Pendery Center for the Arts at the high school to be a part of the meaningful event. The beautiful sunny weather allowed the event to take place all dry and happy.

The seniors in white suits and white dresses walked into the ceremony with the welcoming hands of the arch bearers, the sisters and brothers of the graduates. Led by Ava Batsel, student council president of class of 2020, the seniors walked through the flower arches one by one.

Superintendent Dr. Susan Lang and WHS principal Mrs. Karen Bare both shared words of compliment and encouragement for the class of 2019. They shared that the class was an exceptional model for the underclassmen, and both agreed that their many successes in and out of school are proof of the bright future that awaits them. The class showed extraordinary example of leadership in the school clubs as well as academic and athletic excellence. With their lead, WHS was recognized as the second in the state and 74th in the nation by the U.S. News and World Report 2019 Best High Schools ranking.

Among the seniors were two academically distinguished students: valedictorian Isabel Coyle and salutatorian Sophie Walton. Sophie started the speech by thanking the support of the Wyoming community and giving a warm shout-out to all her friends and family. She pointed out to the privilege of an extraordinary support system like no other. She explained, “Whenever I had a rough day as a kid, there was always a parent, a teacher, or another student there to make sure I was feeling better.” She further emphasized, “we have to be willing to go outside our comfort zones to truly connect with everyone we meet.” 

Isabel shared the same sentiments as Sophie that her successes at school were possible thanks to the support network of the unique community. She went on to discuss the wide variety of future for the graduating seniors. She said, “Although we may be clueless about the next four years, I have no doubt that the curiosity of this class will lead us to greatness. When I look at the class of 2019, I see artists, activists, teachers, computer programmers, lawyers, and more.” She stressed that curiosity is the key factor leading us closer to our goals.

The class of 2019 each received their diplomas, and the delightful event ended with the throw of the red roses into the air. Phones and cameras all around were busy capturing the memorable moment. The seniors posed for pictures here and there together with families, friends, and teachers. As people left one by one, the sunset appeared to represent the end of the first chapter for the students and the excitement for the coming day.

We bid farewell to the wonderful seniors as well as to Mrs. Bare, Dr. Lang, and many other teachers who are retiring or leaving for another career with the end of the 2018-2019 school year. Whatever future awaits for all these people, we are confident that their curiosity and leadership will be directed towards positive changes for the world. 

To all the seniors: You made it through high school! Congratulations and best of luck to all!

New this graduation year was the addition of brothers (in addition to the sisters) serving as arch bearers in the ceremony. For over 60 years the same arches have been used in the procession for the graduating class, and the arches are held by high school students who are a sibling of a member of the graduating class. 

Wyoming High School Alumni from the Class of 1959, 1969, 1979, and 1989 walked in the ceremony procession to acknowledge their graduation anniversary. 

Twins Marc and Sophie Chow were the first in the arch bearing procession. They are siblings of graduating senior Vincent Chow. 

The students line up by height for the ceremony, and these beautiful young women were among the first to enter the flowered procession. 

The sea of white dresses glowed in the sunlight, as did the graduates. 

A recent change in dress policy allowed females the option of wearing a white pant suit instead of a dress, which many chose to do. The policy change furthered the possibilities of personal expression on this important evening. 

Rounding out the back of the class were a few of the tallest students: Nicholas, Eli, James, Luke, and Luke. 

The seniors anxiously awaited their turn to enter the beautiful ceremony. 

The audience was filled with family and friends as the Wyoming High School Senior Concert Choir sang the Alma Mater. 

At the end of the ceremony, the roses were tossed into the air to much fanfare. 

Marieme had a huge group of family and friends in attendance to support her. 

Salutatorian Sophie Walton and valedictorian Isabel Coyle were the proud academic leaders of the Class of 2019. 

Ky’Leese and her family were all smiles after the ceremony. 

AJ’s family proudly wore matching t-shirts to the ceremony. 

When your grandparents come from Hawaii for the ceremony…. lucky Aiden received leis made of cash as a gift!

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